Walker Bay boats: Suitable for Stillwater fishing?

#1
I'm surveying the landscape of options for small stillwater boats. I have a Water Strider, which I do like, and I'm certainly familiar with prams. But, my primary focus is on a boat with a V-bottom or modified V-bottom hull design.

As part of my survey, I've looked at the 8' and 10' Walker Bay dinghy boats.

I've read mixed reviews about these boats, including concerns about the "tippyness" and stability issues of the 8' version.

Can anyone share any insights regarding either or both of these Walker Bay boats as being suitable for stillwater fly fishing?

Thank you.

Cheers,

Bryan
Portland, OR
 

Scott Salzer

previously micro brew
#2
They are used all the time for stillwater fishing. There was quite a group of them on an eastside lake last week. Almost any boat can be "tippy". You can drill out the bench seat to add a regular seat for more comfort. Add a couple of anchors, and a depth sounder mounts and you are good to go.

I'm sure that you will get a better response, with pictures.
 

Buzzy

Active Member
#3
Twist - you do know there's no "one" perfect boat, right? I'm down to three right now and find myself looking less and less at Craigslist. But then my buddy Herb had to go and buy a 10-foot welded aluminum flat bottomed boat "wide and stable" - I was rather tempted - http://www.marlonproducts.com/products/boats/jon-boats/ Not pretty but I wouldn't cringe skidding it over rocks like I do with my wood boat. Best of luck in your search.
 
#4
I have had a Bay 8 for a little while now and have taken it on numerous crabbing trips, and several fishing trips. I've never felt "tippy" in the ocean, but I've never stood up in it out there.

Fishing stillwaters, I stand up and double haul and all that. There have been a few times where it's felt a little unstable, but as long as i pay attention to my foot placement in the boat it's fine. Having said that, I'm still only 30 and still somewhat athletic so my balance is still pretty good.

Overall, I love it. I rows well, cranks along fine with a trolling motor, and seems stable enough for me to be a great stillwater vessel.
 

sroffe

Active Member
#8
Does it float with a person or two in it? Is it safe with a person or two in it? Then it's probably suitable for still water.
 
#11
I've had a Walker Bay 8' for about 6 years, and really like it. It's light, fits in the back of my Toyota Tacoma, easy to load & unload, has a little wheel on the stern that allows you to maneuver it around short distances, very tough and not expensive. I cut a section out of a cheap polymer cutting board and screwed it into the bow to mount a Scotty anchor, and added another one in the stern if I want to use two anchors. I also bought a clamp-on boat seat, which makes it a lot more comfortable.

The safety label says the boat can handle 450 pounds including people and equipment. Though you could carry a kid or another person in a pinch, there wouldn't be enough room for two people to fish. I can stand up if I have to, but the boat is tippy and I usually don't. If you really need more stability, Walker Bay sells a rigid inflatable tube that goes around the boat. These boats are used as yacht tenders, and I would think additional stability would be essential for this application, but not for fly fishing. If you really need to stand up or carry two people, you probably need a bigger boat. I've never looked at the 10' model.

Attached is a picture of me in the boat from a recent outing. Hope this helps.

Tom
 

Attachments

#13
My wife’s grandparents have a walker bay with the inflatable tube they keep at their ocean shores property. I use it to navigate the canals and get to the lakes for fishing and it’s awesome. I throw a 52# thrust minn Kota on it and she flies. The tube makes the difference in stability I’ve fished it without but you have to be careful when standing. Light, durable, manueverable, can’t complain.

F7DF2515-C274-4337-BE85-61C3B2FE1B3B.jpeg
 

Irafly

Indi "Ira" Jones
#14
My wife’s grandparents have a walker bay with the inflatable tube they keep at their ocean shores property. I use it to navigate the canals and get to the lakes for fishing and it’s awesome. I throw a 52# thrust minn Kota on it and she flies. The tube makes the difference in stability I’ve fished it without but you have to be careful when standing. Light, durable, manueverable, can’t complain.

View attachment 164615
Loving that throat sampler. I guess the fish aint bad either.
 

Jim Wallace

Smells like low tide.
#15
Eh, for the stocker 'bows they plant in the local ponds, that one ain't bad! As of this afternoon, there were no reports of any recent, stockings there, but I'll bet they put some in next week, if not tomorrow, since there's a Razor Clam opener on the 17th, and freshly stocked trout would make the weekend seem much sweeter. Other wetside ponds recently have been stocked... Duck awaits, as does Narwhalsawzall!
I have been known to stand and cast in a much less stable craft than an 8' Walker Bay dinghy....my 12' x 30" beam Native Watercraft Ultimate 12. If I can do that, then nearly anyone should be able to keep their balance in a Walker Bay 8'.
 
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